One of the other post-docs told me about a mountain biking trip she and some others had planned. "You should come," she said.
"It sounds like a lot of fun. Maybe I should."
"Oh, you're coming."
It was settled right then and there. So, I packed my stuff that night, showed up at her house at 7:30 the next morning, and then we were off. We drove about four hours to Canyonlands where we picked up the permits she and her husband had applied for a year ago, and then we were on the trail. Six mountain bikes, two Jeeps loaded up with camping gear, food, etc., and a guy on a motorcycle. Off on a four day ride along the White Rim Trail.
As you can see, the scenery was fantastic!
On average, we rode 25 miles a day. We had two and a half days of very strong winds. Some of the girls were actually blown off of their bikes. Multiple times. Luckily, the wind died down on the third day so we didn't have to fight it on the last climb out of the canyon (about 1200 feet in elevation over the course of about a mile and a half).
At the onset, I wasn't sure I'd be able to ride the entire way, but I knew I had to give it a try. I made it. I can't believe I did, but I feel pretty awesome about it. Of course, then I found out that there are people who do the whole thing in one day, then I didn't feel quite as bad ass. Whatever.
I didn't tell my boss I was going. I just told him when I got back. His response? "Good. It sounds like fun." He's awesome!
I might have some more stories to tell from the trip over the next couple of days. Stay tuned.